Wildcats advance through regionals with District championship in their pockets

Haley Hagen • couriersports@vineyardpress.biz
The Mattawan Wildcats show off their District champions’ volleyball trophy following their 3-0 defeat of Portage Central last week.  They pretty easily ousted the Mason Bulldogs, 3-0 as well, in the Regional semi-final Tuesday to continue on in the tournament.   Haley Hagen photo    Mattawan’s Margaret Pelak (9) directs the ball over the net, as the Wildcats downed the Portage Central Mustangs for the District crown last week.  The state-ranked locals, expected to go far in the tournament, took out Mason this week to advance to the Regional championship matchup.   Haley Hagen photo

   The Mattawan Wildcat volleyball team earned a trip to the Regional final this week after claiming a 3-0 win over the Mason Bulldogs.     
   Margaret Pelak helped the Wildcats win the first set with a kill for a 25-16 score. The Wildcats trailed 4-8 early in the second set, when Taylor Candey switched the offensive momentum to the Wild-cats with a kill. Shortly after, Mattawan regained the lead and took the middle game, 25-18.
   To cap off the match, the Wildcats held the Bulldogs to only 11 points in the final set, and headed to the championship round with a 25-11 win.
   It was the Mattawan girls’ 41st sweep of the season.


   To get into the Regional round, the Wildcats rolled over Portage Central for the third time this season to win the District championship, 3-0.
   The Wildcats held the Mustangs to just 14 points in the opening set and quickly earned a 25-14 win.
   Mattawan pulled away in the second the set after Margaret Pelak laid down a kill to put Mattawan up 10-8. Later, two points from Natalie Foster gave the Wildcats a comfortable 20-12 lead, on their way to a second set, victory, 25-16.
   Mattawan finished the match strong, leading through the entire third set. Taylor Rutgers gave the Wildcats a 9-4 lead with one of her 11 kills of the match, and senior Madison Marucci served up an ace to inch Mattawan closer to the win, upping the score to 21-11. Mattawan snagged the trophy with a third set 25-18 win over the Mustangs.
   Taylor Rutgers finished the game with 10 digs, seven receptions, and 11 kills. Natalie Foster finished with 10 kills, and four assisted blocks.

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